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Corporate Investment and Uncertainty: An empirical analysis

  • SHINADA Naoki

A great deal of the relevant literature mentions that one of the reasons for the 1990s recession in Japan is increasing "uncertainty." To clarify the effect of uncertainty, this study demonstrates the relationship between uncertainty of productivity growth and investment using Japanese firm-level panel data from FY1986-FY2004. It is found that increasing uncertainty of firm-level productivity growth has a negative effect on investment, and especially higher uncertainty in the shifting of a technological frontier has had a larger impact on investment since the mid-1990s. It is also found that such a negative effect is weakened in industries with higher expected growth of demand.

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Paper provided by Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI) in its series Discussion papers with number 08033.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:eti:dpaper:08033
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  1. Fumio Hayashi & Tohru Inoue, 1990. "The Relation Between Firm Growth and Q with Multiple Capital Goods: Theory and Evidence from Panel Data on Japanese Firms," NBER Working Papers 3326, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Ricardo J. Caballero & Robert S. Pindyck, 1992. "Uncertainty, Investment, and Industry Evolution," NBER Working Papers 4160, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Pindyck, Robert S, 1982. "Adjustment Costs, Uncertainty, and the Behavior of the Firm," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(3), pages 415-27, June.
  4. Fare, Rolf & Shawna Grosskopf & Mary Norris & Zhongyang Zhang, 1994. "Productivity Growth, Technical Progress, and Efficiency Change in Industrialized Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 66-83, March.
  5. Kazuo Ogawa & Kazuyuki Suzuki, 2000. "Uncertainty and Investment: Some Evidence from the Panel Data of Japanese Manufacturing Firms," The Japanese Economic Review, Japanese Economic Association, vol. 51(2), pages 170-192, 06.
  6. Pindyck, Robert S. & Solimano, Andrés., 1993. "Economic instability and aggregate investment," Working papers 3552-93., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  7. Pindyck, Robert S., 1986. "Irreversible investment, capacity choice, and the value of the firm," Working papers 1802-86., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  8. Andrew B. Abel & Janice C. Eberly, . "A Unified Model of Investment Under Uncertainty," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 14-93, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  9. Ferderer, J Peter, 1993. "The Impact of Uncertainty on Aggregate Investment Spending: An Empirical Analysis," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 25(1), pages 30-48, February.
  10. Vivek Ghosal & Prakash Loungani, 2000. "The Differential Impact of Uncertainty on Investment in Small and Large Businesses," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(2), pages 338-343, May.
  11. Caballero, Ricardo J, 1991. "On the Sign of the Investment-Uncertainty Relationship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 279-88, March.
  12. Ogawa, Kazuo & Kitasaka, Shin-ichi & Yamaoka, Hiroshi & Iwata, Yasuharu, 1996. "Borrowing Constraints and the Role of Land Asset in Japanese Corporate Investment Decision," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 122-149, June.
  13. John Huizinga, 1993. "Inflation uncertainty, relative price uncertainty, and investment in U.S. manufacturing," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 521-557.
  14. Leahy, John V & Whited, Toni M, 1996. "The Effect of Uncertainty on Investment: Some Stylized Facts," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 28(1), pages 64-83, February.
  15. Hayashi, Fumio, 1982. "Tobin's Marginal q and Average q: A Neoclassical Interpretation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 213-24, January.
  16. Huizinga, John, 1993. "Inflation Uncertainty, Relative Price Uncertainty, and Investment in U.S. Manufacturing," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 25(3), pages 521-49, August.
  17. Bulan, Laarni T., 2005. "Real options, irreversible investment and firm uncertainty: New evidence from U.S. firms," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3-4), pages 255-279.
  18. Ghosal, Vivek & Loungani, Prakash, 1996. "Product Market Competition and the Impact of Price Uncertainty on Investment: Some Evidence from US Manufacturing Industries," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 217-28, June.
  19. Abel, Andrew B, 1983. "Optimal Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 228-33, March.
  20. repec:oup:qjecon:v:101:y:1986:i:4:p:707-27 is not listed on IDEAS
  21. repec:oup:qjecon:v:114:y:1999:i:1:p:185-227 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Hartman, Richard, 1972. "The effects of price and cost uncertainty on investment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 258-266, October.
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